Emmanuel Lutheran

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Evalgelical Lutheran Church in America Northeastern Ohio Synod
Letters from Pastor Alan Smearsoll

August, 2023

Sue and I are Dish customers. We have been for nearly 25 years. While there are so many options out there today like Roku and the like, I don’t think you will find us changing at this point in our lives. Plus, the DVR feature is very nice. There are four TV’s connected to our dish receiver. The main TV has what is called a “Hopper” which is the main receiver. Two of the TV’s have what are called “Joeys” and one has a “Super Joey.” These Joeys connect the system all together, providing reception for each TV.

Anyway, the other day something strange happened. We had sound, but no picture. You could get the channel guide to show up and sometimes a picture would appear. Baffling. An error message appeared that said we had to insert the “Smart Card.” This is a card that is in the Hopper. We did that (several times). We unplugged all the Joeys and the Hopper (several times). I looked up on line what to do and followed the instructions (several times). Nothing worked.

Finally, I called Dish. The lady I talked to wanted to walk me through all the steps we had already done. I let her know up front that we had already done all that. At this point I’ve convinced myself that there must have been some sort of major hardware problem and we’d have to get a technician out with new equipment. Then she said “let’s check the Smart Card in the Super Joey.

Huh? Turns out, it has a Smart Card too. Who knew? Fun fact – earlier in the day we had moved some furniture that the Super Joey sat on and …you guessed it, the Smart Card was jiggled loose enough that it wasn’t inserted all the way. A simple tap of the card and voila! TV returned instantly to the Smearsoll household! Such a simple fix that we spent hours trying to resolve step by step and with a number of repetitions. All we needed to do was insert the Smart Card as the error message indicated. The “other” one. J 

A problem in life arises and we follow all the “steps” to “fix it” by reading books on the subject,  looking online for answers, talking to friends or family, or trying to do it ourselves. We do all this “work” and the problem is not resolved. We go to church, read the Bible, do daily devotions and the problem still exists. We cry out “Why God? I’m doing all the right things. I’m a good person.” Then the Holy Spirit says “You are forgetting one thing. Jesus. He carries your burdens, not you. All those other things are helpful, but until you give your problem over to him in faith and trust, it continues to consume you.

“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28

Peace be with you,
Pastor Alan 

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